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Friday, December 02, 2011

NBA THREAD DECEMBER: POST-LOCKOUT

With the lockout over, I estimate that there may be more than 10-12 Primates who want to talk about the NBA, and with our own thread, we won’t detract from what this site is really about: fractional reserve banking, and Tim Tebow.

robinred Posted: December 02, 2011 at 12:26 AM | 3254 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: general

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   2101. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 11:58 AM (#4031118)
SEO jewelry sellers? How bizarre.
i think it's being done more for the purpose of rigging google results than to sell jewelry to us here at BTF.
   2102. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 12:02 PM (#4031122)
I have to give steagles some credit on Hawes, he's been legitimately great so far. Of course, you were higher on the rookie stiff than the veteran stiff.
yeah, i did not at all see this outburst coming from hawes, though, as great as his numbers are, i don't think he's been that good.


and to be fair, the rookie stiff is putting up a 25 PER in about 10 minutes per game.
   2103. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 07, 2012 at 12:25 PM (#4031136)
For anyone who hasn't yet put "weddingtop" on ignore, it's really Gaelan.
   2104. smileyy Posted: January 07, 2012 at 12:44 PM (#4031142)
I'm looking forward to weddingtop's playoff predictions. I'll be really impressed by an HOM ballot, though.
   2105. akrasian Posted: January 07, 2012 at 12:45 PM (#4031143)
His account must have been hacked.
   2106. tshipman Posted: January 07, 2012 at 12:49 PM (#4031147)
I'm looking forward to weddingtop's playoff predictions. I'll be really impressed by an HOM ballot, though.


What is the WAR of Ugg boots?


For anyone who hasn't yet put "weddingtop" on ignore, it's really Gaelan.


I'm assuming this is a joke?
   2107. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 07, 2012 at 01:07 PM (#4031170)
It's a new account, created this morning. With 53 (and counting) posts.
   2108. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 07, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4031171)
For anyone who hasn't yet put "weddingtop" on ignore, it's really Gaelan.

I'm assuming this is a joke?


It's not a joke. Put him on ignore and his screen name history shows up. And if you put him on ignore, he'll be the only one reading his own posts, which kind of defeats the whole purpose of his silly little game. He's obviously still enraged about Posnanski or something.
   2109. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 07, 2012 at 01:27 PM (#4031179)
No, that is not true.
   2110. madvillain Posted: January 07, 2012 at 02:03 PM (#4031209)
Moses, I just never got the sense last night that Orlando was ever going to win. The game for the most part was played within a 8-17 point margin for Chicago, despite the slow start. The big Magic run was fueled by 3 open three pointers in a row, after which an enraged Thibs called timeout and settled things down.

Rose was just coasting for almost the entire 2nd half. He missed a couple layups with his left (injured) hand that would have made it an even easier win.

I Thought SVG comments after the game were telling, "quite frankly, we aren't at that (Chicago's) level". And, "two days ago we didn't show up, tonight was fine, we just got our ass kicked".

IMO, Miami and Chicago are on a different plane than anyone else in the league, including OKC, LA and the Sixers.

____________________

As for the scuttlebutt (I too love that word and use it often in this thread) wrt to Howard, Chicago and Adidas -- it just doesn't make any sense to me. If Howard goes to Chicago and wins 2 titles, how in the world is that bad for Adidas? Does the local market really make that big of deal? Maybe it does.
   2111. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4031232)
IMO, Miami and Chicago are on a different plane than anyone else in the league, including OKC, LA and the Sixers.
but have you actually seen the sixers play to say that?


   2112. robinred Posted: January 07, 2012 at 04:13 PM (#4031278)
Chicago made 8/14 of their threes, with Korver going 5/7, and Ryan Anderson was 1/7 on his. Part of that is regression, part of it is Rose, part of it is D, but part of it is just luck. Orlando was 7/20 on 3s, so the advantage was not that huge, but you always look good when your 3s are dropping and the other guys' aren't. Anderson, who is ORL's #2 guy now, was called out by SVG in the press and apologized to Howard after the game. Also, Howard crushed Noah and 4th quarter issues noted, he almost always gives the Bulls a really hard time.

Chicago is a better a team than Orlando; everyone knows that. They are a serious contender. But that game was not a signature, league-redefining win. Take Miami by double digits twice in a row or go to OKC and work them over, and we'll talk. Chicago's depth and all the crappy teams in the East set them up to run up a big W-L this year, so they will probably have HCA. But they had that last year. Also, I am not sure which "LA" Matt meant, but neither LA team is in that conversation.

As far as the Howard situation, Orlando is now 5-3. One loss was just an NBA grind-of-the-season loss--an off-game in Detroit. But the other two were worth noting. On Christmas in OKC, Orlando got down by about 18 or so, closed it some, but wound up losing by 10, and now has had a similar type of game against Chicago. SVG likes to yap so I wouldn't overreact to his comments, but I do think they reflect the "reality", as he said, that Orlando is a couple of steps below the best teams. Howard is out there on the floor, so he knows this as well.

A guy on an Orlando blog I looked at a few days ago hit on the Nash idea we have kicked around here, suggesting that Howard might do the Paul/LAC thing, and sign a two-year deal if Nash did the same. He said Orlando could offer Nelson and Redick, who are not useless by any means (Nelson has played very poorly this year; it may be that his age and lack of height will run him to ground quickly. Redick has played pretty well so far.) but obviously are not what Phoenix needs. Sarver would more or less just be doing Nash a favor, which is why I said that it would probably need to be a three-way.

There was also a rumor that the Knicks might get into it, offering Stoudemire, who is from FL. Howard and Chandler together would seem to be a bad idea. I have no idea if that has any legs; I would think they would then need to turn around and trade Chandler if they actually got Howard.

If Orlando can make a move, I think they might be able to envision themsleves as "this year's Dallas." Not saying it will happen, but almost no one saw Dallas coming, so I can see Orlando thinking they could do it, too. The problem there is that they have to deal with Chicago and Miami.
   2113. madvillain Posted: January 07, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4031301)
Chicago is a better a team than Orlando; everyone knows that. They are a serious contender. But that game was not a signature, league-redefining win. Take Miami by double digits twice in a row or go to OKC and work them over, and we'll talk. Chicago's depth and all the crappy teams in the East set them up to run up a big W-L this year, so they will probably have HCA. But they had that last year. Also, I am not sure which "LA" Matt meant, but neither LA team is in that conversation.


There are no league defining wins for serious contenders in the regular season. You and I both know that, this is the NBA for Pete's sake, nothing matters for the elite teams until the playoffs.

That said, it's not this one game, it's going 7-1, 5-1 on the road and an 11 ppg differential. Only the Heat stack up with Chicago by those measures. I'm telling you, it's a two team race, Chicago and Miami. Of course, you Robinred, maestro of all things Lakers and a reasonable person, don't consider LA a contender, but many mainstream people, and probably a few lurkers on this thread, consider them one.

And in my nomenclature, LA is the Lakers, LAC is the Clippers.

I've said my feelings on Howard many times. Unless he has an elite scoring wing to pair with him he's the easiest superstar in the game to defend. Chicago owns Orlando, they've won the last 5 against them. It's because they let Howard get his and stay on their 3 point shooters. At the end of the game you hack Howard. It's an easy strategy when you have the incredible depth Chicago does.

The Bulls have 4 quality big men with varying abilities. This is a huge advantage over every other team in the NBA:
- Injuries are less damaging
- Foul trouble is less damaging
- Due to the speed of the guys, teams can't go small on the Bulls. Gibson and Noah can cover the perimeter while killing smaller players on the boards.
- The Bulls own the boards. This gives them a significant advantage in possessions on most nights.
- Thibodeau can ride the hot hands late in games, which he does. Last night it was Gibson and Boozer. Others its Gibson and Asik.
- None of them have to play big minutes, keeping them fresh late in games. Between this and the last comment, its a big reason why the Bulls own the 4th quarter.


That's from Chicago's RealGM board, it's spot on.
   2114. PJ Martinez Posted: January 07, 2012 at 05:30 PM (#4031326)
Thibodeau can ride the hot hands late in games, which he does. Last night it was Gibson and Boozer. Others its Gibson and Asik.

Does Asik ever get "hot"?

Agree with the larger point, though. I don't see any team in the East, certainly, that approaches Miami or Chicago. Will be curious to see what OKC proves capable of out West. No other team out there seems, barring trades, to have the potential Miami and Chicago have flashed so far.
   2115. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 05:42 PM (#4031338)
- None of them have to play big minutes, keeping them fresh late in games. Between this and the last comment, its a big reason why the Bulls own the 4th quarter.
isn't deng averaging about 40 MPG so far this year?


i think syracuse just went on a 21-1 run against a ranked marquette team.
   2116. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 07:16 PM (#4031379)
i'm not sure if i'm late to the party on this, but i'm having a lot of fun with this site.


according to them, the sixers have 4 of the 20 best lineups in the league, and the team's best lineup (holiday-turner-iguodala-young-hawes)* isn't even listed on the page, due to a lack of minutes (which is likely related to the fact that the sixers have played the fewest games in the NBA).



*in playing around with the data there, i've come to the conclusion that the sixers are absolutely awesome when xxx-turner-iguodala-young-hawes are in the lineup together. combined, the lineups with those 4 players (and either lou williams or jrue holiday) have outscored the opposition 95-56 in just 34 minutes of gametime. the offensive number could just be dumb luck related to shooting, but these lineups have also been pretty elite on the defense end of the floor.

   2117. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 10:59 PM (#4031460)
for as good as i've been saying they are, this team has really been every bit of it during this 2nd half.


seriously. they're about to beat an NBA team by 30, and none of their players are going to have scored more than 14 points.

final score: 97-62
   2118. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 07, 2012 at 11:12 PM (#4031465)
DEN-SAS in a good one. Spurs were up about 20 in the second quarter, DEN came back.

Random observation: Lawson (and Andre Miller) seem to do a terrific job protecting the ball with their body. I always think they are about to get their shot blocked due to height (Lawson) or lack of athleticism (Miller) but somehow they make shots and then when I see the replay the difference is how they position their bodies.
   2119. PJ Martinez Posted: January 07, 2012 at 11:18 PM (#4031466)
So what happened in Atlanta?
   2120. Greg Maddux School of Reflexive Profanity Posted: January 07, 2012 at 11:46 PM (#4031476)
Richard Jefferson just put the Nuggets away inside of two minutes by first blocking Lawson on a breakaway to protect a 5-point lead, then coming down and hitting a three at the other end before Lawson could get back on defense.
   2121. steagles Posted: January 07, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4031482)
28 points allowed in the 2nd half. TOR shot 32% from the floor, 1/12 from beyond the arc. sixers had 8 blocks, 13 steals, and forced 17 turnovers en route to setting a new team record for fewest points allowed in a game (62, i think).

the team won by 35 and their leading scorers finished tied with 14 points (holiday, iguodala). i'm not sure if there's an easy way to figure this out, but i can't imagine there's ever been a larger margin of victory in the NBA by a team whose leading scorer had fewer points.


anyway, hawes left late in the 2nd quarter with apparent back soreness. he came out to start the 2nd half, but he only made it 2 minutes before getting pulled from the game. with how well he's played to start the season, it'd suck a big, long, hard, hairy, slippery, salty, fat one if he's limited by this in any way.

eurogoon picked up some of the slack left in hawes absence, putting up 9 and 10 with 2 assists, 2 blocks, and a steal in 19 minutes. the guy just looks like a player.


there's really no need to single out anyone else's performance. the team was basically perfect, yet the individual performances were decidedly mundane. iguodala and holiday led in points. iguodala and eurogoon led in rebounds. holiday led the way with 6 assists, but 5 other players finished with between 2 and 4.


best player on the floor: iguodala*


*that's not really true, but i'm gonna give it to him anyway in recognition of the fact that he was 6/6 from the FT line.
   2122. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:01 AM (#4031486)
Nuggets find success with a small ball lineup where Gallo was at the 4 (he scored something like 12 points in the first 5 minutes of the 3rd quarter) and so of course they stop feeding him the ball after that until the last minute of the game where he scores 5 or 6 more. Stupid basketball and they earned the loss. By the way, the SAS announce team was surprisingly competent and insightful tonight.
   2123. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:11 AM (#4031490)
I've talked about basketballvalue a bit, yeah.
I feel very conflicted about how to use their stuff. On the one hand, I do believe that combinations and matchups are really important. On the other, you're always dealing with tiny sample sizes. (Probably need a few years of data to feel really comfortable with a lot of it - and that's too long a period of time to treat the commodities involved as 'constants' + too long to wait in general.)

Glad to see Danny Green have a big night for SA (24-7-2-2-2) - I've long liked that guy as a 3nD type.

   2124. nick swisher hygiene Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:35 AM (#4031497)
Nuggets and Tar Heels fan here so feel a certain ambivalence about Danny ####### Green busting out like that....how good can Denver be? Really I can't tell yet. If everything goes right couldn't they make the finals? Can't see them winning it, but gimmie a double shot of Steagles's favorite beverage and maybe--
   2125. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:46 AM (#4031504)
anybody on any given night, right?
(fwiw, his stats from the d league and limited minutes in the bigs suggest that he's a rotation caliber player ... and hollinger's draft rater loved him (relatively speaking) coming out of school.)
   2126. robinred Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:07 AM (#4031518)
So what happened in Atlanta?


Atlanta was 9/12 on 3s, 56% overall, and the Bulls were due for a loss. There will be many ups and downs like that throughout the league all year. Carlos Boozer was -39 in 22 minutes of floor time; Hollinger had four separate Tweets mocking Boozer. Rose was -33 in 28 minutes.

That said, it's not this one game, it's going 7-1, 5-1 on the road and an 11 ppg differential. Only the Heat stack up with Chicago by those measures.


It's early, and some of that is the Memphis game, which was a bit of an outlier. Also, the West is more balanced than the East, so it will be harder to pile up big victory margins in the West, in general. The West teams lost a few games against the East's weak sisters for commercial/schedule reasons. The Bulls beat the Lakers by 1, lost to GS by 8, beat Sacto by 10, and LAC by 13.

As far as Howard, the Bulls don't really have a Howard-slower like Collins or Perkins. They always beat Orlando because they have Rose and two or three other guys better than Orlando's other guys.

I'm not knocking Chicago, but I don't see a big separation between them and OKC in terms of which of them is more likely to beat Miami four times.


how good can Denver be?


Hollinger is in love with them. Seeing them against the Lakers, I was not overwhelmed. But, this year could be a window in the West for Portland, Denver or Memphis if everything clicks. Oklahoma City is very young and may need to make a tweak or two and/or move Westbrook to take the next step, LAC needs a couple of more rotation guys, and SA and DAL have age on their stars and other issues. But the good-at-every-spot plan is tough to pull off unless you have elite defense and a couple of good big guys, like the Pistons team in 2004.
   2127. smileyy Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:48 AM (#4031521)
I could see a lot of teams with a shot at the Finals in the West. This isn't the topheavy league of years past.
   2128. smileyy Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:50 AM (#4031522)
I could see a lot of teams with a shot at the Finals in the West. This isn't the topheavy league of years past.
   2129. smileyy Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:51 AM (#4031523)
I could see a lot of teams with a shot at the Finals in the West. This isn't the topheavy league of years past.
   2130. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4031564)
Chicago made 8/14 of their threes, with Korver going 5/7, and Ryan Anderson was 1/7 on his.

Who went 2 for 0? They need to keep getting that guy involved.
   2131. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:21 PM (#4031577)
Not to step on a joke, but Ryan Anderson is on Orlando, the team playing against Chicago that night.
   2132. steagles Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:53 PM (#4031588)
so, there's a team (i think we all know which one i'm talking about) whose margin of victory so far this season is +15. this team also happens to lead the NBA, by quite a massive margin, in both D-rating and opponent's eFG%. the team is also top 5 in O-rating and FG%, and 6th in the league in eFG%.

there are 7 rotation players whose PER is above 15 (eurogoon leads the way with a 28, though he's done his damage in only 59 minutes--everyone else has more than 180 minutes), plus evan turner, who's lagging behind with a 14.


on monday, the team hosts the pacers, so hopefully that'll be a stiffer test than TOR, DET, or GSW. monday's game is also the first of a back-to-back-to-back, and it's the 3rd game of a stretch where they'll play 7 in 9 days. and the 3rd game of that back-to-back-to-back is @ the knicks, so that should be another good test for the team, at least if they have any spring left in their legs.
   2133. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:12 PM (#4031669)
Knicks reportedly thinking of signing Bogans.
   2134. PJ Martinez Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:05 PM (#4031840)
so, there's a team (i think we all know which one i'm talking about) whose margin of victory so far this season is +15.

Teams that Philadelphia has beaten so far: Phoenix, Golden State, New Orleans, Detroit, Toronto. Not exactly a murderers row. Granted, they've beaten them by a lot, which is generally a very good sign. And their two losses were both away, and both close. Still, it's obviously a bit early to draw big conclusions.

They've gotten off to a good start. I'll be curious to see how they do against Indiana at home tonight.
   2135. robinred Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:56 PM (#4031860)
Howard's line today with 1 min left in the 3rd: 0 pts, 0 rebs, 0 shot attempts. 4 PF, 8 minutes played. See nothing on-line about an injury.

Kings are still losing to ORL by 3.

Eric Maynor tore his ACL and will miss the rest of the season.
   2136. steagles Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:58 PM (#4031861)
dwight howard with a hell of a game so far. 0 points, 0 rebounds, 0 blocks, and 4 personal fouls in 7 minutes going into the 4th quarter. *i guess i'll send a diet sprite to robinred*

And their two losses were both away, and both close.
they were also both home openers. both buildings were absolutely electric.

They've gotten off to a good start. I'll be curious to see how they do against Indiana at home tonight.
i'm very excited for it. i've got a feeling that if meeks goes off early, the game will be an absolute rout. he's averaging about 20 minutes per, but the bulk of those minutes have come in the 1st quarter, when the team has really struggled to execute offensively, and he's really been absolute ####. the team has (basically) gotten nothing from him, and they have a 15 point per game differential. if he actually starts hitting his shots, my preseason predictions may even wind up being pessimistic.


   2137. steagles Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:00 PM (#4031923)
Kevin Ding: Marreese Speights' strategy for defending Bynum tonight: Counting "1-2 ..." out loud for refs, hoping for 3-second violation on Drew. 1 minute ago
   2138. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 08:12 AM (#4032020)
by beating the spurs last night, the thunder have become the first team this season to sweep a back-to-back-to-back. their first two wins came in a home and home against houston.

i'd say that's pretty impressive.



and, since all things i post in this thread must always connect with the sixers, i believe that earlier in this thread i said that the thunder are the only other team in the league who could match up against the sixers in terms of youth, athleticism, experience, and continuity. i think there's a certain kind of destiny that's becoming apparent, as both teams shot out to 5-2 records going into a back-to-back-to-back.
   2139. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 09, 2012 at 08:53 AM (#4032032)
by beating the spurs last night, the thunder have become the first team this season to sweep a back-to-back-to-back. their first two wins came in a home and home against houston.

i'd say that's pretty impressive.


I think saw someone tweet something about teams being undefeated in the last game of the back to back to back thus far.
   2140. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: January 09, 2012 at 09:23 AM (#4032044)
Kevin Ding: Marreese Speights' strategy for defending Bynum tonight: Counting "1-2 ..." out loud for refs, hoping for 3-second violation on Drew. 1 minute ago


That's probably the most alert thing Speights has done on the floor.
   2141. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 09, 2012 at 12:18 PM (#4032105)
I think saw someone tweet something about teams being undefeated in the last game of the back to back to back thus far.

The turd the Bulls laid in Atlanta on Saturday night was the Hawks' third game of their back to back to back. Of course, the Hawks also played 4 OTs in the first two games of that stretch.

As for the game itself...

Atlanta was 9/12 on 3s, 56% overall, and the Bulls were due for a loss. There will be many ups and downs like that throughout the league all year. Carlos Boozer was -39 in 22 minutes of floor time; Hollinger had four separate Tweets mocking Boozer. Rose was -33 in 28 minutes.

I think the Hawks started 8 for 8 on 3's (Radmonovich was 5/5 in the first half, IIRC). The Hawks jumped out to a huge lead in the first (I think they were up 16 early) thanks to nailing open shot after open shot. The Bulls pulled it to within 2 late in the 2nd quarter, only to see the Hawks finish the half on another huge run and go into halftime up 15 or so. They didn't stop missing in the 3rd quarter, and built the lead up to 27 or so before Thibs threw in the towel. It was, by far, the worst performance I've seen out of the Bulls - effort-wise at least - under Thibs. It's like the Bulls assumed it would be a schedule win for them because of the Hawks games Thu/Fri, and then were shocked the Hawks actually tried.
   2142. andrewberg Posted: January 09, 2012 at 01:57 PM (#4032201)
I was looking at records by division last night. It's certainly too early to draw any definitive conclusions, but I was stunned at how good the NW Division has been. I guess everyone knew that OKC was great, that POR and DEN were at least very good, and that MN was improving. It seems like the big surprise has been Utah, even though 4 of their 5 wins have been against pretty bad teams (counting Memphis without zbo).

It is also odd that the Clippers have played 4 fewer games than the Lakers and some others.
   2143. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4032233)
there is an actual artice that was written by an actual person with an actual title that says:

"why spencer hawes could be the next lebron james"



i wouldn't bother clicking the link (there's really not anything of substance that's there), but i did want to point out its existence.
   2144. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 02:34 PM (#4032235)
oh, and also, there's this

which includes the following table, related to the sixers:

Wins Produced
Expected  Actual  Forecast 
(takes current record as given)
7.0-0.0   5-2     64 
   2145. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 09, 2012 at 03:19 PM (#4032289)
Linking the good Dr. Berri, steagles? That's a new low, even for you.

---

While fooling around with the (way too small of a sample size to draw any sort of meaningful information) league rankings, something odd is going on with the SOS at BB-Ref. Sort the Misc Box by SOS and the first 14 teams ranked with the hardest schedules are all from the West; the East occupy 15 of the 16 easiest schedules (only the T'Wolves aren't in the group at top with the West, they're 18th). That's entirely freakishly coincidental, or something ain't right.
   2146. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 03:39 PM (#4032321)
Linking the good Dr. Berri, steagles? That's a new low, even for you.
i did say that you shouldn't bother clicking the link. it's not my fault that you didn't listen.

and i think the SOS for the east gets dragged down pretty heavily by washington, detroit, new jersey, and charlotte. all of those teams have an average margin of defeat over 10 points per game, and even the worst teams in the west are significantly more competitive.

   2147. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 09, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4032402)
Don't worry, I didn't click it. I hovered, because I wanted to see which fansite you were writing for. But I saw the WOW url, and it was worse than I could have ever feared.

---

I'm saying I think that with teams playing only between 6 and 10 games we wouldn't see such a stark difference in East/West SOS yet, especially since some teams have played more from the other conference than their own or vice versa, etc.
   2148. madvillain Posted: January 09, 2012 at 04:31 PM (#4032413)
Man, I sure jinxed the Bulls. The entire team just laid an egg. There are nights were Rose can save them from themselves, he was part of the problem in Atlanta however. I understand trying to get others involved, but for the life of me, I don't understand what posting up Noah does, other than lose 10 seconds of the shot clock.
   2149. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 09, 2012 at 04:39 PM (#4032428)
Not to step on a joke, but Ryan Anderson is on Orlando, the team playing against Chicago that night.

Oh, whoops. And it's not even that generic a name. There's only 3 Andersons in the NBA, compared to 10 Johnsons and 12 Williamses.
   2150. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 09, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4032436)
I understand trying to get others involved, but for the life of me, I don't understand what posting up Noah does, other than lose 10 seconds of the shot clock.

Noah just flat out sucks so far this year (38% shooting). Even his defense isn't quite right. Well, I guess his passing has been ok (in key spots anyway).
   2151. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4032448)
Don't worry, I didn't click it. I hovered, because I wanted to see which fansite you were writing for. But I saw the WOW url, and it was worse than I could have ever feared.
:)


i know kevin used to be a big proponent of the guy, but i'm really not at all familiar with his work. is he aware of the fact that the sixers are not likely to finish the season by winning 63 games in a row?
   2152. madvillain Posted: January 09, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4032468)
i know kevin used to be a big proponent of the guy, but i'm really not at all familiar with his work. is he aware of the fact that the sixers are not likely to finish the season by winning 63 games in a row?


I applaud Berri for trying to bring some rigorous academic study to what wins basketball games, but his analysis starts from a flawed premise, that you can regress the box score stats into meaningful team wide predictors. Berri once claimed that Rodman was more important to the Bulls than Jordan.
   2153. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 05:12 PM (#4032478)
1. Which team is currently the fifth-best in the NBA?


Henry Abbott, TrueHoop: Philadelphia Sixers. It feels weird even saying it. But with the NBA's third-youngest team, and five straight road games to open, they have just killed teams with one blowout win after another. I don't expect them to be on this list forever, but they belong here now.


Chad Ford, ESPN.com: Philadelphia Sixers. Doug Collins continues to works miracles in Philly. They have the best defense in the NBA right now, are getting great play from all of their starters, a breakout performance in the middle from Spencer Hawes. There's a good chance they may take the Atlantic this year.


Tom Haberstroh, ESPN.com: Philadelphia Sixers. They might be the most impressive team in the NBA right now, considering they've absolutely crushed their opponents thus far. Even accounting for the schedule, the plus-107 point differential still makes me weak in the knees.


David Thorpe, Scouts Inc.: There are a few candidates here, but I like how the San Antonio Spurs have started the season, even with the injury to Manu. DeJuan Blair is back to being the nastiest beast in the league, and is still shocking people with his ability to finish. That is helping them become a very difficult team to defend.


Brian Windhorst, ESPN.com.: Philadelphia Sixers. The Sixers' start is remarkable not just because it took them two weeks to get a home game but because they are blowing the competition off the floor. Other than the home/road issue, it hasn't been a super tough schedule so far, but who cares if you're slaughtering the opposition? The defensive numbers are strong and the team is eight deep. Plus, could anyone have seen this start coming for Spencer Hawes? The guy is an All-Star candidate right now.



i believe that's a whole lot of good ju-ju.
   2154. JJ1986 Posted: January 09, 2012 at 06:10 PM (#4032530)
Who is clearly the 4th best? Portland?
   2155. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: January 09, 2012 at 06:22 PM (#4032540)
Everyone has MIA 1 and CHI 2, most have OKC/DEN 3/4 in some order (one vote for POR).

Complete link, this is just meant to be on how the teams have played so far, not predictive (clearly 5th would be at least 4 spots too low for the Sixers if we're talking predictive).
   2156. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 09, 2012 at 06:40 PM (#4032562)
The post counter in the hot topics bars hasn't reset and still counts those spam posts in the total, so it shows we have 20 or so more posts than we do, and I keep getting fooled into thinking a bigger discussion has broken out (normally, the total is a little low on long threads like this one).

   2157. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 09:19 PM (#4032690)
is anyone else watching this thing? sixers have been really loose with the ball, but they still came out of the half with a 5 point lead.

i'd like to see the team jump out of the gate to start the 3rd, but if it stays close, i'll be pretty curious at what the rotation will look like in the 4th quarter. they really haven't had an opportunity to run meaningful late game sets, so that might be something to look for.
   2158. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 09, 2012 at 11:21 PM (#4032788)
Shumpert has had to leave 3 of the last 4 games with leg cramps. Has there ever been another HOF NBA player with this sort of problem?

EDIT: Aaron Affllalo (sp?) has been really unimpressive to me thus far. He plays like a star, but lacks the star athleticism/skill. Way too much dribbling and wild drives from him.
   2159. steagles Posted: January 09, 2012 at 11:29 PM (#4032796)
if i'm not mistaken, the sixers just shot 50% from the field against a team that was 3rd in the NBA in opponent's FG%.


eurogoon put up 11 and 8 in about 18 minutes. he hit a 3 and showed some post moves. that's another really good game for him off the bench.

thaddeus young had 12 and 8, plus steals, assists, charges, and a really sweet chasedown block in transition that probably should have been called goaltending.

iguodala had 20, 9, and 5 in a season-high 39 minutes. seeing as this was the first game of a back-to-back-to-back and the 3rd game of 7 in a 9 day span, that amount of run could be problematic.

hawes with 12 and 8, brand with 6 and 5.


the sixers bench outscored indiana's bench 41-19. lou, thad, ET, and eurogoon combined to shoot 17/29 from the field.


paul george wound up with 13, 7, and 5, but he only shot 4/16 from the field.



that's a hell of a win.
   2160. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 12:20 AM (#4032841)
that's a hell of a win.


Sorry, but I don't see it that way. They were at home. Granger didn't play, and neither did George Hill. Paul George had to go 44 minutes and lead the Pacers in shot attempts. He wasn't up to it.

As a few people here and elsewhere have noted, the 76ers have a good "lockout year" team: depth, youth, continuity, balance. Add that to the lousy teams 9-15 in the East and the 76ers are going to have a good record. But as up and down as most teams have been, it seems very clear that the league at the moment is:

Miami
Chicago Oklahoma City

______________________

Then a knot of 13 teams. Not that all these teams are exactly the same, but I think it is pretty clear that most of the following teams will very probably make the post-season:

EAST PHI BOS ORL NY ATL IND
WEST SA DAL LAC POR DEN LAL MEM

I think the East is pretty locked in to the eight teams above. Even if Orlando trades Howard, I think they will get something good enough in return that they will still make it to the post-season. In the West, I could see injury-driven scenarios such that the Lakers or the Grizzlies hit 9th place, and Houston or Minnesota or Phoenix (I think Minnesota is better than Utah, even with the records) makes it to 8th. Memphis will obviously miss Randolph and Arthur, although I think they have covered about as well as they could with Cunningham and Speights.

Where the 76ers are in that knot...they are probably better than many people realize. Hawes appears to be better, they will get more out of Turner, and Vucevic looks like a nice get. But they have played only two of the other 15 teams on that list. They lost to one, and beat the other at home by 10, when it was short-handed. The best player is probably still Iguodala. It is hard to seriously contend that way, no matter how many guys you have who are pretty good.

One thing that could happen for them is that Jrue Holiday could be a second-tier star. But I don't see that happening this year.
   2161. Into the Void Posted: January 10, 2012 at 12:33 AM (#4032850)
that's a hell of a win.


It's early January and the Sixers just beat, at home by 10 points, a team that will (at best) be a seven or eight seed. They should definitely send the game ball to the Basketball Hall of Fame. I think it's fair to say it's one of the most impressive and important wins in sports history.
   2162. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:03 AM (#4032911)
I think you guys are looking at this backwards. What does it say about Indiana that they were able to hang close to the best team in the league, on the road, without two of their key players? This Pacers team is clearly capable of making some noise.
   2163. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 09:09 AM (#4032968)
WHAT'S UP with Delonte West?

On Saturday, the former Saint Joseph's star told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram he was banned from visiting the White House with his Mavericks teammates yesterday because he failed a criminal-background check.

Read more: http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/sixers/20120110_Delonte_misses_out_on_the_West_Wing.html#ixzz1j3oKr1se

   2164. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 11:02 AM (#4033036)
since he's coming off two pretty good games, i thought i'd check back to see what i'd written about eurogoon around the draft:

it seems like the sixers may have become enamored with nikola vucevic. he was the tallest participant at the combine, measuring in at a shade under 7 feet. he averaged 17 and 10 as a junior and was top 25 in DR% by kenpom. he also shot 35% from beyond the college arc.

he doesn't look like an elite shotblocker, but he does seem to have the physical size (at 6'11.75, 260 lbs, 7'4.5 wingspan) and strength to function as a legitimate two-way center. he played 35 minutes per game as a junior at USC, which is either a sign that he knows how to defend without hacking (which would be good) or he's just completely indifferent at that end (which would make him a perfect fir with the rest of the sixers big men). at the least, it shows that he's got good wind.



i think this guy was thought of more as a fringe 1st rounder coming into the process, but he has performed well at various workouts (including one with the sixers), and his collegiate record is fairly impressive, which means he's been rising up draft lists.

he'll turn 21 on october 24th, so he'd fit into the long range focus of the team, while hopefully developing enough over his 1st season to earn a starting job by the stretch run.



there seems to be a lot to like about him. i think my favorite thing, though, is that he shot 75% from the FT line as a junior. that'd be a really nice luxury late in games.



and right after he was drafted:

well, that wasn't exactly a well kept secret.


i'm fairly happy. he's got virtually no athleticism, but he's got very good size, a good head, and some offensive skill. plus he's still just 21, so that'll fit right in with the current core of the team.

i was wrong about him having no athleticism. he's got some move in him. the size thing seems like it was a bit overblown by me--he doesn't really look that big, and he's not really at all lumbering. watching him play, even in limited action, it's really easy to see how he played 35 minutes per game at USC. not having really seen him play there, i don't know if he was this good, but he's got a jump shot, post moves, passing ability, he's good in the pick and roll, he's a great help defender, he's not worthless one on one in the defensive post. he rebounds well on both the offensive and defensive glass. and to say he has a good head was really spot on. on both ends of the floor, he's just always in the right position.


and then there's this
don't like shumpert to the knicks.


but then, i'm a sixers fan, so that probably is a good thing. the guy is a tremendous defender, and he's got some handle.




and also, jon leuer (who i was pimping for a few months prior to the draft) is putting up 13 and 9 per 36 minutes for milwaukee, adding some steals, blocks, assists, and shooting 51% from the floor for milwaukee. he looks like he's really one of the only bright spots they've had so far this season.

   2165. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 10, 2012 at 11:34 AM (#4033065)
So, what was the final story w/ weddingtop(/gaelan?)? Never saw any of the posts in question.

We're due for a new thread, by the way.
   2166. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 10, 2012 at 12:49 PM (#4033193)
So, what was the final story w/ weddingtop(/gaelan?)? Never saw any of the posts in question.

Just a spambot. Clearly not gaelen, and supposedly confirmed by Jim (only Andy's old ass thought it was him).

---

Boozer had a great game for the Bulls last night, obviously it's less impressive when you consider it was against the diminuitve and pathetic Pistons. 23pts on 9/13 shooting (and he wasn't settling for 18ft jumpers on all of them; which has been a habit of his this year). Once again, he tried on defense, which is notable for him (he even dove on the ground for a loose ball; a first in his Bulls career). I am really starting to worry about Noah though, no FGA (4 FTs though). I haven't heard anything about any injuries with him or lingering health problems, but again I'll just say he ain't right. Thibs agrees too, because he's losing a lot of minutes (and key minutes late in games) to Asik. And don't look now, but Ronnie Brewer might have figured out what shots he should be taking; he's been great with Rip out and even though defenses play him differently than Rip (and rightfully so, I should add), the Bulls offense is still looking decent with him on the floor.
   2167. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:30 PM (#4033367)
sixers are number 1 in hollinger's power rankings.
   2168. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:35 PM (#4033373)
I admit, I LOL'd in real life.
   2169. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:41 PM (#4033384)
sixers are number 1 in hollinger's power rankings.

And the Lakers are ahead of the Thunder. I respect Hollinger, but the Power Rankings are page-hit conversation piece.
   2170. ?Donde esta Dagoberto Campaneris? Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:44 PM (#4033389)
What does it say about Indiana that they were able to hang close to the best team in the league, on the road, without two of their key players?

It says that in addition to being a great basketball team, the 76ers are also a great collection of men who have no urge to humiliate lesser foes.

   2171. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 10, 2012 at 03:49 PM (#4033393)
It's the unsustainable scoring margin putting them so high. It overstates scoring margin usually, but I think it will be even more obvious this year as we get further into the schedule and there's more "schedule" losses, blowouts, etc.

And like almost everything else, the limited sample size also comes into play.
   2172. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:10 PM (#4033414)
sixers are number 1 in hollinger's power rankings.


I was sure this was going to be an Albright picture.

And the Lakers are ahead of the Thunder. I respect Hollinger, but the Power Rankings are page-hit conversation piece.


Yeah, it suits him to be a contrarian because there is little value in providing an alternative evaluative methodology that produces the same results.
   2173. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:17 PM (#4033422)
It says that in addition to being a great basketball team, the 76ers are also a great collection of men who have no urge to humiliate lesser foes.
jrue holiday had 7 turnovers and 2 assists. if he had had a less irresponsible game, they'd have won by 20.

   2174. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:22 PM (#4033427)
We should change the subject to scrubby bigs to see if that will get our new thread submitted.

Anyone notice that Byron Don't-call-me-BJ Mullens has been getting double figures most nights in Charlotte? He really likes getting out of the low post. He plays like a slow 3 at times, but at least he can take up space at the other end.
   2175. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:34 PM (#4033437)
It's early, but Ian Mahinmi seems to be fufilling my long held dream of his being a legit rotation big man. Playing 20 minutes a game, he's got a PER of 17.5 (based on an unsustainably good fg% (though the ft% is way below his norms as well). Admittedly, some of those minutes will dry up when Haywood and Odom become less useless, but - as a guy who can credibly guard fives and put the ball in the basket - I think his job is relatively secure.

Mullens: He's topping my expectations, that's for sure. He's been like what I thought a more active version of what I thought Hawes' ceiling was (minus Spencer's passing).
   2176. kpelton Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4033454)
I have both Philadelphia #1 and Lakers > Thunder in my ratings. I think those conclusions are pretty much inescapable if you're starting from the perspective that point differential is most important. The issue, as noted, is the confidence intervals on those ratings are enormous right now. Here's what I found on that last season:
http://basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=1257&nocache=1326228835
   2177. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4033460)
Darko

If that doesn't summon a new thread, nothing will.
   2178. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 10, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4033461)
Kevin, your LibertyBallers tweet made me chuckle.
   2179. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4033469)
I have both Philadelphia #1 and Lakers > Thunder in my ratings

I don't have an issue with that per se; it's a snapshot, created by formulas, and a conversation piece. People overreact to it all the time. But raise your hand if you think:

a) Philadelphia is the best team in basketball (Have a seat, Mr. Steagles. I will see you after class).
b) The Lakers are better than Oklahoma City.
   2180. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:28 PM (#4033500)
a) Philadelphia is the best team in basketball (Have a seat, Mr. Steagles. I will see you after class).
going back through the draft threads, i saw something i said back in june (and have probably said a few times in varying ways in the months since)--do i think the sixers are the best team in the eastern conference? no. do i think they're so far behind the top 2 that they wouldn't have a chance at an upset in a 7 game series? also, no.


that's still pretty much the essence of my feelings about the team, except it's a bit different now, because, instead of it just being me asserting my belief that they're a very good team, they're actually going out every night and proving it on the court.
Kevin, your LibertyBallers tweet made me chuckle.
yeah, that site has been astoundingly pessimistic. like, trade iguodala, amnesty brand, let thaddeus young walk if he's signed to an offer sheet, and tank for the next 3 years in the hopes of maybe becoming sacramento.


if they weren't actually seriously proposing these things, it would be a pretty awesome parody of the typical person who calls into the local sports radio talk shows.
   2181. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:31 PM (#4033507)
I don't have an issue with that per se; it's a snapshot, created by formulas, and a conversation piece. People overreact to it all the time. But raise your hand if you think:

a) Philadelphia is the best team in basketball (Have a seat, Mr. Steagles. I will see you after class).
b) The Lakers are better than Oklahoma City.


I think this misconstrues the point of the rankings. They aren't saying Team A is better than Team B, they're saying Team A HAS THUS FAR been better than Team B. At least, that's the way I look at it, and that's why I've never understood why these rankings tend to cause so much of an issue on this thread.
   2182. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:36 PM (#4033515)
I think this misconstrues the point of the rankings.


Uhhh, yes:

it's a snapshot, created by formulas, and a conversation piece. People overreact to it all the time.
   2183. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:44 PM (#4033533)
rr, my bad, I was responding to the issues you raised with a and b. Acknowledging your it's a snapshot point, why the need to raise those questions?
   2184. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:50 PM (#4033545)
Acknowledging your it's a snapshot point, why the need to raise those questions?


To point out that the Power Rankings are snapshots, created by formulas, that don't always jibe with basic things we know. Hollinger and Pelton have explained this many times, but not that many people seem to have internalized it. I personally care very little about the Power Rankings; they are just kind of a fun thing to look at. The Lakers were too high in them last year for weeks in large part because they beat Cleveland by 55 points one night last year.

I do think that most people HERE get it; I honestly don't recall many BTF arguments over the Power Rankings.

I wonder if, like ESPN's overrulling Simmons and choosing "Grantland" over "The Wheelhouse" or whatever, the term "Power Rankings" is a network thing, and Hollinger would call it something else if he could.
   2185. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:18 PM (#4033585)
ESPN's overrulling Simmons and choosing "Grantland" over "The Wheelhouse" or whatever


Is this a thing? I had not heard anything like that before.
   2186. Maxwn Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:21 PM (#4033591)
I wonder if, like ESPN's overrulling Simmons and choosing "Grantland" over "The Wheelhouse" or whatever, the term "Power Rankings" is a network thing, and Hollinger would call it something else if he could.

I think its more just a sports media term now. That's just what you call that sort of ranking, ESPN, SI, CBS they all call them that. No idea why that became the accepted usage, but seems to be widespread.
   2187. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:23 PM (#4033595)
Is this a thing? I had not heard anything like that before.


According to Simmons, yes. He said in an interview he wanted to call it something else, but didn't push it because, "you have to pick your battles."
   2188. Jimmy P Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:24 PM (#4033597)
   2189. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:43 PM (#4033611)
I haven't seen the T-Wolves play yet this year (so no Rubio either), so I'm looking forward to tonight's Bulls/TWolves matchup.
   2190. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 06:56 PM (#4033625)
I haven't seen the T-Wolves play yet this year (so no Rubio either), so I'm looking forward to tonight's Bulls/TWolves matchup.


I'm not. Third game in three days, all with travel in between. They looked flat in Toronto last night. My hopes are very low.
   2191. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: January 10, 2012 at 07:15 PM (#4033644)
With the 20 something posts missing due to spambot, when you click on last on the hot topics, it takes you to page 1, which is jarring. Or it does until there's really a page 23.

I'm not. Third game in three days, all with travel in between. They looked flat in Toronto last night. My hopes are very low.

As mentioned before, the Bulls already lost to a team on game 3 of 3, so, you never know. This is game 2 of 3 in a row for the Bulls, and the only one not in Chicago. Love should have a big game against Boozer though (I think I'm going to predict this every game the rest of the year he has against a PF that is either decent or has any sort of outside shot).
   2192. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 07:39 PM (#4033662)
Love should have a big game against Boozer though (I think I'm going to predict this every game the rest of the year he has against a PF that is either decent or has any sort of outside shot).


I will boldly predict that he will shoot better than 3/16 tonight. For all the bad things that happened last night, getting Barea back was a big improvement. I like how he plays off the ball when he's in the game with Rubio. He does all of the things I want a SG to be able to do- make enough shots to stretch the defense, slash to the hoop and finish one on one, be able to pass off of penetration without necessarily initiating the offense- but at a height that requires him to play with a PG who can guard a 2. At this point, Rubio is actually probably better off guarding 2's as long as they are not Kobe or Wade.

I also don't mind when Ridnour plays off the ball on offense because he's a very competent spotup shooter. I might have said this before, but he reminds me of when Hinrich used to play off the ball in Chicago. You can see the PG trying to get out, then he remembers that he's more of a scorer, and it works out well enough.

What I don't like is Wayne Ellington. It is striking to see how many different shots he takes every night. What I mean by that is that most elite players kind of have their "spots." It might be a block that they like to work off of, a spot around the arc where they're used to shooting, a two dribbles then a floater in the lane move, etc. Ellington has no conscience. He will take any and every shot, even if it is something he has obviously never practiced before. It leads to lots of inefficiency. I wonder how he has the confidence to take such random and undisciplined shots. I guess the confidence comes from being the only 2 in a 4-man backcourt rotation, and having your 2 competitors out indefinitely.
   2193. Davo Dozier Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:02 PM (#4033755)
The Sixers are winning by 30 again?
   2194. Davo Dozier Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:08 PM (#4033759)
In our fantasy league, is there any way to drop one player and replace him with another right now (ie, after tonight's games have already started)?

I mean, I'm aware the switch won't take effect until tomorrow anyway. But it's something I'd prefer to do now...
   2195. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4033760)
The Sixers are winning by 30 again?
yeah, but it's only against sacramento, so it's really only like half a win. 3/4 at the most.
   2196. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:13 PM (#4033761)
In our fantasy league, is there any way to drop one player and replace him with another right now (ie, after tonight's games have already started)?


Just add the new guy and it wil give you an option to drop someone
   2197. andrewberg Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:41 PM (#4033777)
Bulls lead 51-27, Wolves came back to tie it at 70. Rubio had 10 assists and 3 FGs out of 15 buckets in the comeback. At least MN is playing to the level of the competition against good teams as well as bad.
   2198. ray james Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:49 PM (#4033782)
Rubio is outplaying Rose.
   2199. robinred Posted: January 10, 2012 at 10:57 PM (#4033786)
Lowe's take on the 76ers is fair. It basically says, "They're pretty good, but they don't have a superstar."

Chuck Hayes and Marcus Thornton missed tonight's game. Hickson and Fredette, starting, went a combined 3/12.

OKC and MEM, two of my league pass teams, are playing an entertaining game.
   2200. steagles Posted: January 10, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4033792)
so, for those of you who may be wondering how exactly the sixers have been consistently winning just about every game in the last two weeks by 20 points, here's a bit of a primer:

the starting unit has generally come out flat. at this point, iguodala, brand, and hawes are really the least athletic players in the team's rotation, and jodie meeks is a fairly one-dimensional offensive player, so the offense from the starting unit has been really ineffective at the starts of games.

about 6 minutes in, collins will bring in some combination of lou williams, thad young, evan turner, and now, nikola vucevic. the players they usually sub for are meeks, brand, and hawes. now, the pace established by the starting 5 is generally very deliberate, and when lou and thad come into the game, the intensity they bring with them has generally led to a fairly significant run in the sixers favor as they run laps around the other team.

at the end of the first quarter, they'll hold a slim lead, maybe 2-8 points.

the second quarter is usually defined by a steady increase in the margin. there's really no explosive run at this point, but the defensive intensity will pick up, and you can usually see that the sixers just have more jump than the opposition.

the third quarter is where the damage is done. this team really comes out with a killer instinct after the half, and they'll just open gaping deficits. they came out 11-0 to start the 3rd quarter tonight, and they had a 30-8 run in the 3rd quarter against toronto the other night.

by the 4th quarter, the game is usually decided. when detroit pulled saturday's game to within 6, the sixers went on an 11-1 run to basically put the game on ice. they added to their lead a few minutes later with a 13-1 run that opened the margin up to 23.

in a game like tonight's, the entirety of the 4th quarter is basically garbage time. the team only has 4 guards, so one of the rotation guys is always on the floor (which is getting to be a bit annoying, because it would absolutely suck if the team lost evan turner for the season because he tears his knee with 3 minutes to go in a game the team leads by 23), but tonight, the lineup that finished the game was turner-nocioni-brackins-allen-battie. the sixers dressed, and played, all 13 players on the roster.



anyway, i'm gonna say that jodie meeks goes off tomorrow and the sixers hang 115 on the knicks at MSG. this is an opportunity to make a statement against the competition in the atlantic division, and i'm optimistic that they do just that.
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